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Discussion Starter #1
If you guys remember, not too long ago I rescued a Ridgeback/Boxer mix from the K9 Rescue League in Oxford. He is an awesome dog and great with the kids. However, he DIGS in the back yard. I'm not talking small holes either. These holes are big enough to hide an adult body! Someone told me to sprinkle pepper or hot spices over the holes after I filled them back in but he just rolls in it and then digs them back up. Also, when I leave, I can't crate him. I don't understand why. When I got him, he was in a crate for most of the day. When I put him in, he goes crazy trying to get out. One time, I put him in it while I was gone for 4 hours and when I came home, he was sweating, panting and his paws were bloody from trying to get out. If I let him just free in the house, he gets into the garbage or recycle bins. Sometimes he chews up a shoe! Anyway, I love the dog and don't want to get rid of him but I need some suggestions on this behavior! Oh, one more thing....I don't think he was treated very nicely at his old home. If I even look at him wrong he pees all over the place. I can't yell at him for getting into the garbage unless I want to clean up another mess!

Thanks for any help!



Jen
 

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I know of a method to deal with holes, but I myself could not use it, even knowing full well it would be effective. It involves filling the hole with water, and giving the dog the impression the he will well be drowned in it (as in actually holding his head in it). This is from the same school of thought that says to take the chewed up shoe and tape it to the dogs mouth in such a way that the dog can still breathe, pant, but will be unable to remove the shoe. Leave for 6 hours or so. I have no doubt that the dog will not touch another shoe for the rest of his life. However I couldnt do any of that to my pooch (I guess I'm not russian enough?).
So my approach (thanks mainerdr!) has been to not let the dog form any bad habits. In other words, make damn sure that there are no shoes around for the dog to eat, ever. When he does get ahold of one scold him some, but keep in mind that its your fault for leaving the shoe there in the first place. For holes, make sure the dog is supervised at all times while outside. Once he grows up he'll loose the desire to dig if he never dug before.
The crate thing can be solved by serving his food in the crate, and letting him get to it volantarily. He'll likely not eat for a few days, but hunger will soon win him over. Also, never use the crate for punishment. Use the bathroom :)
Depending on the age, the peeing all over the place is pretty normal. They just dont have much control over that when they are young. Most dogs grow out of it just fine.

Side note: If you think dealing with holes is bad, try having a dog knock down a chunk of a cinderblock wall that surrounds the back yard.
 

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When I was have problems with my dog that I couldn't figure out, I called Bark Buster it pricey but I was amazed at how quickly my dog changed...The guy that came to the house and show us how to train him, had compelete control over the dog with in mins it was amazing.

Do you every catch him doing?

If you want the number to this guy just send me a PM

It works trust me, what he has you do seem strange but it works great...There is no hitting of the dog in any sort of way .

One of the best things is, it is just a one time fee and for the rest of that dogs life they will come out free of charge and help you with any problem that you have with that dog.
 

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You can also look into a remote shock collar. They aren't the cheapest things in the world, but they work wonders. The dog won't pin the shock on you, but on the action he is doing. I've delt with a dog from hell that you couldn't walk or train to do anything, after a week with the collar it was a whole new dog. It's amazing how fast they can associate the shock to certain actions. The only down side is that you need to catch them in the act in order to correct the issues. With the crate, put him in it for short times while you are home to get him use to it. Also put food and water in there for him. Also make sure he can see you the first few times he is in there. Keep him stimulated with toys or something, try to keep it as a game until he get comfortable. When he starts getting use to it put him in it over night in your bedroom. My sister trained her lab this way, and he chooses to sleep in his crate over anywhere else now. He loves it and goes in volentarily. Make sure you reward going into the age as well.

Good luck,
Sepias
 

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jen...what about building a fence and a doggie door to your garage (if you have a garage) and letting him have the choice to be outside or in the garage while you are gone? or get a dog house and leave him outside, then if it rains or he wants to go inside he can go in his doghouse.
 

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I know this may sound crazy but watch a couple of eps of the Dog Whisperer. It won't make you an expert in dogs but this guy does wonders with dogs. You can pick up a few things about dog behavior. Sounds like your mutt has seperation anxiety. Its kinda like the bad ass kid that gets into trouble to recieve some kind of attention. The best thing I hear for this is to tire the dog out before you leave the house. Play with him excerise, I even seen them put a dog on a treadmill. When you leave the the pup will be so tired out he will sleep all day instead of dig.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
We're not allowed to have any fencing in our yard....subdivision rules. :rolleyes: However, we knew that when we moved in...but we didn't have a dog then.

We have a bark collar but it seems cruel to me. Anyone can break a dog's spirit and that's what it seems to do. He just lays there and is afraid to move. My husband uses it and it DOES work but at what cost to the dog? He seems more shy and afraid now.

I would love to have an invisible fence however he barks at the neighbors. It wouldn't be too much of an issue but the people next door are trying to sell their house right now. I'd hate for them to be like, "Oh the house is nice...except for that annoying dog next door." I'd be pissed if I were trying to sell.

Anyway, the remote shock collar seems like a good idea. Maybe shocking him real quick while doing something bad is the best idea yet. Hopefully it will only take a day or two because I have a lot of other things to do besides watch HIM all day! ;)

Thanks for the suggestions guys! I'm open for more! (Please don't tell me to take him to obedient school...I don't have the time for that!!)



Jen
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Karmastuntra said:
I know this may sound crazy but watch a couple of eps of the Dog Whisperer. It won't make you an expert in dogs but this guy does wonders with dogs. You can pick up a few things about dog behavior. Sounds like your mutt has seperation anxiety. Its kinda like the bad ass kid that gets into trouble to recieve some kind of attention. The best thing I hear for this is to tire the dog out before you leave the house. Play with him excerise, I even seen them put a dog on a treadmill. When you leave the the pup will be so tired out he will sleep all day instead of dig.
LOL This dog has a never ending supply of energy! We take him to my parent's house and he'll chase the horses all day. He also follows us when we are riding on the 4-wheelers! That definitely tires him out but I can't do that everyday. Maybe a few more walks during the day will do the trick! Thanks!:)




Jen
 

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Teflon coated doggie shoes should end the digging, and a muzzle will keep him from chewing on things. Of course there is really no substitution for electric current.
 

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Im telling you call the Bark Buster they come to your house, you will see a change in his behavoir almost right away..No electric collars that is just flat out mean..Way it sounds to me is he thinks he is king of the house so you need to knock him down show him who is boss..They will show you how to do that..
Here is the website http://www.barkbusters.com/

Try it trust me you thank me afterwards...
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Trapper said:
Im telling you call the Bark Buster they come to your house, you will see a change in his behavoir almost right away..No electric collars that is just flat out mean..Way it sounds to me is he thinks he is king of the house so you need to knock him down show him who is boss..They will show you how to do that..
Here is the website http://www.barkbusters.com/

Try it trust me you thank me afterwards...
I took the test and he scored a 129! Not good! I'll see what Clay says about them. Thanks for the info!



Jen
 

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Just some info on the treadmill thing. If FL it is illegal to have a dog that knows how to use a treadmill because it is common practice when training a dog for fighting. I don't know if the law is there in MI, but it is in FL. The shock collars aren't mean, its no different than spanking a dog... it just takes less effort on your part:D I've willingly shocked myself with one several times, as well as a few times when my brother in law thought it would be funny, and while it doesn't "hurt" it just feels really really weird. The muscles in the vacinity of the shock lock up and it just feels weird. It's not painful, so much as surprising. The electric fences are good things as well. My fathers dog learned what he can and can't do near it in about a week. Just make sure you put up the flags that come with it until the dog is use to it.

Sepias
 

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mac020 said:
Doggie Prozac! (I'm serious)
My vet tried to perscribe that for my cat because he started loosing hair after my sisters cat moved in. I'm all for helping out my pets, but I just think that that is going a little too far.
 

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SepiasSoul said:
You can also look into a remote shock collar. They aren't the cheapest things in the world, but they work wonders. The dog won't pin the shock on you, but on the action he is doing. I've delt with a dog from hell that you couldn't walk or train to do anything, after a week with the collar it was a whole new dog. It's amazing how fast they can associate the shock to certain actions. The only down side is that you need to catch them in the act in order to correct the issues.

Good luck,
Sepias
It worked great for my dog. Think it cost about $250 and it has a 3/4 mile range (so they say). No digging holes, won't go in the street and won't go past our propertiy line. The one we use has 2 buttons on it. One for adjustable shock. the other is just a beep. When we first started we had it set on beep and shock. now we just hit the beep button and she comes to ya. We can just hold the remote (or just a closed fist) and ask her if she "wants some" and she gets this funny look. Heres a link. They changed the style but pretty much the same product. collar
 

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I used the shock on a 200 pound male black lab, that dog went from beast to great pet in days with no ill effect.

Be sure to get one with a warning beep and you will only need to shock the dog 3 or 4 times total.

I was totally against the shocking of a dog until I saw how well it worked on this dog, and it more than likely save the dogs life cause it would jump the fence and chase cars before using it.


The dog could be on a full run and just the beep would stop him in his tracks and he would look you square in the eyes and wait for directions.

Its not for all dogs but for larger male dogs that will not listen at all its a life saver.
 

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My 2 cents...

Jen, I hate to say it but you must take the TIME to work with and train your dog; there are no quick fixes. When you rescue a dog you never know what issues you will have to work through.

Remember when we rescued Opie ==> after 2 months of working with him and taking him to obedience class we realized that we could not provide the training TIME he needed. We talked with the rescue organization and we both determined it was in the dog's best interest to return him so they could find an owner that could commit the time he required. Although we felt we horrible and felt like we let Opie down, it was the best decision for Opie and ourselves. Sometimes you have to admit defeat. A dog has to fit into your life, not your life fitting around the dog.

You were doing one of the most important things when you first got your dog and that is crate training. Giving him free reign in your house only adds to his anxiety. Dogs are den animals and he will learn to enjoy his crate and eventually will go in there freely.

You have to establish a routine with him which helps with the transition into your life ==> remember he had a routine when he was in the shelter. Feed him on a schedule, once in the morning and once in the evening. And I agree, feed him in his crate initially to help him like his crate. Also, crate him on a schedule. Dogs need routine just like children.

If you think the dog was abused, you have to find training methods that DON'T cause him pain ==> you're just bringing up bad memories for him and elongating the training process. My advice is to talk to the shelter and ask them for advice or if they know of a dog trainer that can help you.

I know you say you don't have time for obedience classes, but it is the best thing you can do for the dog and your family ==> remember this dog will be with you for 10-15 years; 1 hour every week for 6 weeks of basic training is not a long time for a great dog for a lifetime. A dog needs to know where they fall in the pack; dogs are hierarchical animals and they need to know who the leader (alpha dog) is; otherwise they will run you ==> obedience class will help you be a better Alpha Dog.

If you are close to Oxford, I would recommend Metamora Canine Academy, they have Saturday morning classes and Thursday evening classes.

Good luck and I hope things work out...JT :)
 
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